The OUA regular season is finally here. The Gryphons and the Warriors kick it off tonight (7 pm) at UW’s Warrior Field. The two teams have very different expectations heading into the game. Guelph is a favourite to return to the Yates Cup. Waterloo is just looking to become competitive.
For the first time in five years Waterloo seems to have a settled situation at the head coaching position. That is a big step forward. After years of “interim” coaches, new man Chris Bertoia is clearly in-charge and working full-time to rebuild the program. Bertoia, a UW alumnus, has a good reputation and would have been a top candidate for almost any OUA opening.
Warrior fans seem to have responded to having one of their own in charge of the program as there is a lot more positivity around the program. Bertoia put a decent recruiting class together, and looks like he’ll be able lure more elite players to UW in the future than has been the case in the previous decade. This is a long term rebuilding project that won’t show in an immediate improvement in W-L record.
My Take on the Game: Guelph will win easily. At this point in time the disparity in talent between the two teams is huge. A margin of victory of less than 33 points will hurt the Gryphons chances of securing the tie breaker in event we finished tied with Western. But I don’t see that being an obstacle. I look for the Guelph offense to get in the groove early and keep their foot on the gas throughout the game. I’d hate to see the O shoot themselves in the foot early with penalties, dropped balls and poor execution like they did in Manitoba. The Gryphon D is quite capable of smothering the Warriors. A shutout is a distinct possibility. A near necessity if this unit is going to meet some of their season goals.
The Previews & Other Links:
Gryphons.ca Game Preview: Gryphons Open Season With Road Game Versus Warriors
KW Record Game Preview: Waterloo Warriors have high hopes
Waterloo Sports Info via CIS website: Waterloo Team preview
OUA.ca: Team Preview (video): Waterloo Warriors
Recent history: Guelph is 6-0 versus the Warriors since 2007. Not many of the games were even close. The average margin of victory – 27 points. I’m not certain when UW last defeated Guelph but I’m guessing perhaps one of Tuffy Knight’s teams at the turn of the century.
2014 – did not play
2013 – 41-19 Guelph
2012 – 47-17 Guelph
2011 – 65-13 Guelph
2010 – did not play
2009 – 34-24 Guelph
2008 – 37 -22 Guelph
2007 – 41-8 Guelph
Broadcast / Social Media Options:
♦ Online Streaming at OUA.tv – the link
♦ Local cable TV – Rogers TV Channel 20 in Guelph, Cambridge, K-W & surrounding areas
♦ Twitter – Wondering who to follow? Look for game updates, news & photos, beginning with the pregame tailgate party from @ . I may even tweet a couple times myself @. I expect @ and @ will provide score updates.